Coach Kyle Shanahan said in a video conference with reporters on Wednesday that he hoped to see an improvement in his QB’s health and thus play better on the pitch. If Garoppolo has a physical setback or if Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Rams plays out like the loss to the Dolphins, Shanahan won’t wait to bench Garoppolo a second time.
“If he has a good week of training and looks like he’s giving us the best chance of winning, then I won’t hesitate,” Shanahan said. “If it looks like it hurts in the game and he’s forbidden to do it, then we’ll do what we did again.
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Shanahan said he didn’t need to have special conversations with Garoppolo after the 28-year-old played the worst half of his NFL career. They watched the movie and spoke as usual, knowing there must be a marked improvement going forward.
The head coach understands that a high ankle sprain takes a long time to heal, and its effects can last for a season. The improvements could be gradual, but Shanahan expects Garoppolo to make steady progress.
Garoppolo had a pretty good week of training to start Week 5 but then seemed more affected with his ankle during the game. Shanahan said the 49ers have done what they can to prepare Garoppolo for live rehearsals, but there isn’t much that they can do in practice.
“There’s nothing more we can do other than the tackle because we’re going full speed Wednesday and Thursday, a few spells on Friday,” Shanahan said. “We are not holding back. We do bootlegs, we play the action, we scramble, we sit in the pocket. So, we are already doing everything you can, except the tackle. “
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Garoppolo’s injury is one of many the 49ers have faced, but Shanahan and the players find no excuses. How each individual improves and regains health will affect the rest of the season.
“It’s hard for you to play at your best, but that doesn’t mean you can’t play.” Shanahan said. “A lot of guys go out there and they have things that keep them from being the best, but if you can play you still have to go play and I’ll be the judge of that watching it all week long. . ”
Nothing could be easier for Garoppolo and his offense, who have their biggest task yet against All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald on Sunday. Donald racked up four of the Rams’ eight sacks in their victory over the Washington soccer team in Week 5.
Garoppolo will definitely need both ankles to avoid ending up on the Levi’s Stadium pitch.